Continuing Van Alen Book Club’s exploration of technology and cities, we turn to Seth Fried’s science-fiction novel, The Municipalists. Blending the genres of comedy and crime, Fried gives us an epic buddy-cop story featuring an unlikely pair: Henry Thompson, a by-the-books urban planner and bureaucrat for a powerful government agency, and his sidekick, OWEN, a supercomputer-generated AI assistant with a love for people watching and a serious drinking problem. Together, Henry and OWEN must head to Metropolis and solve a troubling series of crimes all of which are connected to the urban planning policies of their employer and the city’s officials. Join us as we use Fried’s novel to reflect on the role of technology in society, the need for greater inclusion, and smart ways to ensure that cities are fair, just, and equitable places in the future.
We are excited to have Daphne Lundi moderate book club this month.
Daphne Lundi is Senior Policy Advisor with the NYC Mayor’s Office of Resiliency. Prior to that she was an urban planner at the NYC Department of City Planning focused on climate resilience and neighborhood planning. She is the Vice Chair of APA New York Metro Chapter Diversity Committee and also serves as an Advisory Board Member for the Octavia Project, a science-fiction summer program for teen girls and non-binary youth that uses the lens of sci-fi to explore computer science, engineering, writing, and design. She is also a member of BlackSpace, a collective of Black urbanists in New York City that work to bridge the gaps between policy, people, and place to address inequality and injustice in the built environment.
Open to new and returning participants.
Food and beverages will be provided.
This month’s book is available at a discount from the following independent booksellers:
– Greenlight Bookstore (Fort Greene) – 15% discount
– Community Bookstore (Park Slope) – 20% discount
(Just say you’re with Van Alen Book Club at check-out)
Contact Andrew Brown